InspireNet Turns One

17 December 2010

An MSFHR-funded network aimed at engaging more nurses in health services research recently celebrated its successful first year of operations. A program of the BC Nursing Research Initiative (BCNRI), which is funded by the BC Ministry of Health Services and facilitated by MSFHR, InspireNet (Innovative Nursing Services and Practice Informed by Research and Evaluation Network) connects researchers, practitioners, policy-makers, educators and students.

The InspireNet team’s first annual workshop attracted upwards of 180 of its over 500 members. Grace Mickelson, a co-leader of InspireNet, sat down for a Q&A about keys to InspireNet’s success:

Q: Did you ever expect to attract over 500 members in your first year?
A: We are completely thrilled to have reached the 500 member milestone. We didn’t think we’d get there so quickly, but there is obviously an appetite and a need for this type of community.

Q: What’s the first year of InspireNet’s life been like?
A: BUSY! We have many members who have been working hard to get to the place we’re at now. We have a Leadership Council, five emerging action teams and four coordinating teams that are all responsible for different aspects of InspireNet.  There is steady traffic to our fully searchable website, we just held our first workshop and we’re even starting to get into social media (follow us Twitter or checkout our Facebook page). Now that we’re up and running, we’re getting excited about the year ahead!

Q: That’s a lot of coordination and effort – how have you been able to pull it off so well?
A: Teamwork. We have an incredibly dedicated group and we are all working towards the same thing – improving nursing health services. It’s the foundation of all our work and we’re really committed to ensuring that everything we do is focused around that goal. This was a foundational year and everyone has been really engaged in our activities. We are proud of our progress and appreciative of our members’ support.

Q: So what’s next for InspireNet?
A: A key focus for next year will be supporting our action teams and coordinating teams.  We have such a solid foundation to build on, and now we’re able to focus on the action and innovation.  It’s really is an exciting time! We plan to hold our workshop annually, so we’ll be planning that and we’re also working really closely with groups like the MSFHR-funded Nursing Research Facilitator Program to widen our net of collaboration.

Q: Where do people get more information and how can they join and participate?
A: The first stop is our website: It’s a really great resource and membership is free. Of course we encourage anyone who is interested in helping to improve nursing health services to get involved. We have roles available at all different levels and with different time commitments, so there’s something for everyone!

Read more about InspireNet in our 2009/10 progress report, Focus Forward or on our website.